June 15, 2011

Theology and Unspeech

In trying to write the paper that will finally persolve the spring semester for me, I'm reviewing some old notes from a most brilliant course I took back in the fall of 2005 on the development of trinitarian doctrine.

This passage from my notes says a lot about the nature of theological speech:

"Begotten, not made"...note that this distinction is totally made up, to protect, theologically, what we need to say...the distinction is invented, in an apophatic way, simply opposed not to something we grasp, but to another proposition. The same goes for homoousious--we don't know exactly what it means, but we use it to to protect, precisely, what we don't mean.

1 comment:

Greg said...

The apophatic shovel does seem to do a fair amount of heavy lifting when it comes to digging us out of the pile of confusion.

The apophatic rag wipes clean the glass through which we see darkly. No point in staring at the smudges.

Will be interesting to see if your payment is accepted. (I'm sure it will be, but we hunger for drama.)